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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: Systematics of Lepidoptera: Invasive Species, Pests, and Biological Control Agents

Location: Systematic Entomology

Title: Neoleucinodes elegantalis (Guenée)(Lepidoptera: Crambidae), an insect pest of Neotropical solanaceous fruits

Authors
item Diaz, A. -
item Solis, M
item Kondo, T.

Submitted to: Potential Invasive Pests of Agricultural Crops
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: December 2, 2011
Publication Date: June 27, 2013
Citation: Diaz, A.E., Solis, M.A., Kondo, T.D. 2013. Neoleucinodes elegantalis (Guenée)(Lepidoptera: Crambidae), an insect pest of Neotropical solanaceous fruits. In: Pena,J., editor. Potential Invasive Pests of Agricultural Crops. London, United Kingdom: CABI. p. 464.

Interpretive Summary: The tomato fruit borer is a major pest of tomatoes in Central and South America. It is a member of a group of species of which very little is known about their biology. The United States produced over 3,976 million pounds of tomatoes in 2004. The tomato fruit borer is considered a quarantine pest and a serious threat to tomatoes. This chapter reviews the identification, classification, biology, distribution, chemical control, and potential biological control of the tomato fruit borer in South America. This information will be useful to scientists, action agencies or quarantine identifiers, and biological control workers working with this pest.

Technical Abstract: The tomato fruit borer, Neoleucinodes elegantalis (Guenée) (Lepidoptera: Crambidae) is one of the most important pests of solanaceous crops in South America. The larva of this insect develops inside the fruit, feeding on the mesocarp and the endosperm; therefore, chemical control is inefficient, yet farmers frequently use insecticides, such as organophosphates, carbamates and pyrethroids. This practice involves an economic investment that ranges from 5.2% to 56.7% of total production costs. It causes environmental degradation and human health concerns because fruits are eaten fresh and farmers do not take into account the life of pesticide residues. Additionally, pesticide residues in fruits preclude the export of these fruits to niche markets and other countries where it does not occur.

Last Modified: 10/31/2014